retail news in context, analysis with attitude

• Supervalu announced that it has signed a deal with Coinstar that will expand on a pilot program that began early last year in the Pacific Northwest. The agreement will allow Supervalu customers - at some 1,000 stores under various banners - to cash in their coins for free when they choose the Supervalu gift card option at the Coinstar kiosk. The fee-free coin counting service also applies to other gift cards and e-certificates from a variety of national retailers.

• The New York Times reports that a new campaign is under way to support the Tillamook brand of medium cheddar cheese sold by the Tillamook County Creamery Association, a cooperative of farms in Oregon. The campaign - which includes television and social media - is described as a “light-hearted” look at what other food thinks about being paired with Tillamook cheese, and is designed to give Tillamook a stronger brand identity and consumer appeal.
KC's View:
First time I ever had Tillamook cheese was on a Tillamook Cheeseburger at Burgerville ... and I instantly had the sense that it was something special, and worth coming back for whenever I was in the Pacific Northwest. As a consumer, I love that kind of specificity ...

From the brand perspective, it seems to me that for a brand to have any strength, it has to be willing to exercise its muscles.